Mazzano in the beginning of June. Since the rainy May, the greenery around the town is still uncommonly strong and vital. The vegetation covers the earth with a soft, moist and shady rug of life, offering the variety of local animals a place to play and breed. Together the beings fill the thick humid air with miscellaneous scents, crackle, hum and chirp.
The medieval town of Mazzano rises from the jungle like an Aztec city, partly carved into the mountain, partly built up with the local limestone. The densely packed buildings shadow the narrow streets almost without a pause. At high noon, the living creatures take it easy in the cool pockets of the sunburn stonewalls.
The Mazzanian urban fabric consists mostly of simple vernacular buildings without special artistic qualities. The milieu is composed of uniform local materials, techniques and scale, which transform little by little by the changes in use and care. It is impossible to date the structures, since they are built and mended in countless phases, with countlessly reused building stones. The character of the town is intermingled in terms of time, material and use.
The uniqueness of the historic town lies in its organic process. The stone buildings keep standing, though forgotten, and they are easy to reuse. Durable materials hold memory and knowledge on good conventions. With minor repairs the town is constantly approaching the optimal.
For the explorer, one of the most distinctive features of Mazzano is related to the elevations. It is impossible to enter the old town without ascending either the steep paths from the riverside or the sunburn streets from the main road. In either way, the approach is a burden. Therefore, people tend to enter the city in a specific mood, feeling both warm and elastic, and pleased to be there.
However, the town is not only for the people. During our stay, the most visible and audible creatures there were the martins. Living in their round row houses beneath the eaves, they filled the air with constant air show, scream and twitter. Beside the temporary martins, there dwell also several firmly settled cats, jackdaws and sparrows. Occupying distinct levels of the city, the animals are at least as much part of the urban life as the people.
Nevertheless, the premier feature of the Mazzanian atmosphere is the River Treya. The River has formed the valley and led the first people to the place. Today it enables the vegetation to bloom, and fills the area with a continuous murmur of stream and cascades. Surprisingly, the volume varies greatly in different parts of the town, creating unique, local soundscapes.
In Mazzano it is especially easy to see the present only as a thin layer on top of the past. As a mature and diversified entity, the medieval town embodies the local history in the most substantial way. Crafted and improved by innumerable hands, paws and beaks, the town also expresses the historical unity of preferences amongst all living organisms.